It's not about the photos...though, that's a perk! | Austin Boudoir Studio

Miss "K" had a plethora of one-liners that made me smile. First, when she arrived at her shoot and told me she had her nails painted for the first time in forever and actually felt like a GIRL. Then when she showed up for her photo reveal and said "I brought 3 different credit cards!". Then again when I read through her review.

You may notice that I almost always include a little bit of a story from my clients in their blog posts. Do you know WHY I do that!?!?! Because you all need to know that EVERY WOMAN that I photograph faces the nerves, the insecurities, the "devil on their shoulder" about whether or not they could POSSIBLY look sexy.  And also, I desperately want each and every woman that is considering this process with ME to realize that this is so much more than the photos. THIS is an EXPERIENCE. 

If she were never to even see a photo from the shoot, she had already experienced a self-esteem boost, she already experienced being pampered, she experienced being encouraged, she experienced being the star of the show. 

"I never take time for myself... As a full time working mother of two kids, manager of a women's cycling team, competitive athlete, wife, I am constantly sacrificing and putting others' needs first. When I stumbled across Kara's Instagram one night, I was instantly intrigued. The images were breathtaking. These women not only looked gorgeous, but FIERCE. "

Miss K's hair and makeup by  Lorena of Lola Beauty, Austin TX. 

Miss K's hair and makeup by Lorena of Lola Beauty, Austin TX. 

"After a few months of thinking, "Man I wish I could do that!" I decided why the hell not!?! I booked the appointment, put my deposit down and then totally freaked out. I'm pretty athletic, more comfortable make up free with a tank top and ball cap. I really wondered how it would be, totally exposing myself to someone else, and how it would feel to have the critical camera eye pointed at my bare ass. I almost postponed my appointment because I have *gasp* SHORT HAIR and wondered if I'd be able to look sexy, instead of my usual 'sporty'. "

"I prepped for the shoot by getting my first mani/pedi in (LITERALLY) years and packing my Xanax! I shouldn't have worried one bit. Seriously, the moment Kara came down and greeted me warmly with a hug I was instantly put at ease. "

"While getting my hair and makeup done, the atmosphere was relaxed and completely comfortable. My make up and hair was unbelievable. I looked in the mirror and felt transformed, but still ME. Just a badass version of me. Kara was the penultimate professional and is incredibly talented at putting nervous half naked women completely at ease. At the end of the shoot I felt so incredibly empowered."

I didn’t even need to look at a picture, I FELT amazing.
— Miss K

"The photo reveal completely blew my mind. I just sat there, kind of in shock. "This was me???" Kara is incredibly talented and was able to make me look like the women I had admired on her Instagram. I looked FIERCE. Kara never pressured, only guided me in my selections. This was by far, one of the best experiences of my life. From the very first time I reached out to Kara until the photo reveal, every single step in the process has been positive. It's not just having pretty pictures taken of yourself. It's something I feel every single woman should do for herself at least once in their life. And like I've told my friends, don't get a Groupon photo shoot. You are worth the very best. I can't wait to do this again."

I can’t remember the last time I really felt beautiful. Even without seeing a single image, I walked out of that photo shoot feeling incredibly empowered. And when I saw the photos, my mouth dropped. I had no idea I could be sexy. No clue. And there it was, in living color, me looking like a vixen. And it wasn’t contrived, or filtered. My tan lines (sorry!!!) and scars were still there. This was ME. And I looked amazing.

It was so awesome to HEAR the very thing that I preach constantly from a client herself....that it wasn't about the photos. Before she even saw one, it was worth it to her. But, of course, the photos are the icing. The sweetest, most indulgent (yet obviously fat-free, sugar-free, calorie-free, gluten-free and dairy-free) icing you could ever fathom ;) So it's totally fair to do it for BOTH the experience AND the photos. 

Are you finally ready for your own boudoir experience? I promise to put you at ease. Even in your underwear. It's what I do. Let's chat, dahhling!

Name *
Name

A Photographic Love Story | Austin Maternity Boudoir

Hands down the best part of being a photographer is the relationships that I develop with my clients....and the one thing that I truly miss about shooting weddings is being a small part of a couple's journey over the years. Many times, I would photograph a couple's engagement photos, followed by their wedding photos, followed by their maternity photos, followed by their family photos. Sometimes in a completely different order too. The biggest compliment I can receive is being chosen again and again. 

Now, I know that I'm no longer shooting weddings, families, and children. But guess what I still shoot? Maternity beauty and boudoir. AND I WAS SOOOOOO OVER-THE-MOON GIDDY when Laura contacted me and asked me to shoot her maternity boudoir photos

 

 

THE PROPOSAL

Years ago, Jackie contacted me via e-mail and let me know she was coming into town from Houston with her girlfriend Laura, and wanted me to play paparazzi and capture her surprise proposa

I arrived to Castle Park and played tourist. At one point Laura pointed me out and I thought for sure I was busted, but later found out she was just telling Jackie how much she wanted a camera like mine. Phew! Needless to say, the proposal was outstanding, I had a BLAST photographing them, and it was truly special to be involved in this part of their relationship. 

This shoot was even featured on a popular inspiration blog for "Lesbians, Queers, and Everyone Else" called "On a Bicycle Built for Two.". Go check out the post HERE.

In 2013, I photographed Jackie's proposal to Laura at Castle Park.

In 2013, I photographed Jackie's proposal to Laura at Castle Park.

THE WEDDING

Eventually I got the call about the wedding! Jackie and Laura wanted me to capture their Austin wedding at VUKA. It was seriously amazing. I loved it to bits. Umm...HELLO....they served HOMESLICE PIZZA at their reception. Seriously badass. They are a stunning couple with killer personalities, and the camera...well.....MY CAMERA (back off other camera people, they're MINE) loves them!

In 2014, I photographed Jackie + Laura's Wedding at VUKA

In 2014, I photographed Jackie + Laura's Wedding at VUKA

 

THE BABBBYYYYY

And then...AND THEN I got *THE* email. "HEY KARA! SO to add to our little love story that you've captured every step of...We're PREGNANT!!"

WEEEEEEEEE!!!

Pregnancy beauty + boudoir is seriously just so stunning.  I wish it's something I would have done when pregnant with my boys. It's so easy to feel "BLAH" when you're pregnant...but these beauty sessions really help you to remember the miraculous parts of it all. Our bodies are just incredible to be able to grow little humans.  Eventually I got the email that Jackie would be joining us for a few shots which was even better!  Check out a small handful of a really stunning collection of maternity boudoir:

 

SERIOUSLY. Can we just talk for a second about what a freaking GODDESS Laura is!?!?! She is as a woman, alone....but as a pregnant woman!? Holy fox!  She makes pregnancy look DAMN GOOD! 

During a maternity shoot, I'm always sure to photograph my client sans belly...just a gorgeous beauty portrait. Because they don't *ALWAYS* want to think of themselves pregnant. Women aren't JUST a vessel for a baby! So while I take care to photograph the MOM in them, I always am sure to take care of the WOMAN in them, too. Which is what this photo below is meant to portray. RRAWRRR!!

It's genuinely one of the biggest honors to be a part of people's story like this. I hope to someday shoot Jackie + Laura's mommy + me beauty session after they have their little girl!  They are such beautiful people, inside and out, and I'm blessed to have crossed paths with them a few years ago. 

Thank you Jackie, Laura, + Baby R for coming back to see me and my lens once again!! <3

 

Boudoir for a Boost! | Austin Studio Boudoir

Miss "B" stepped into my studio with an awesomely positive energy, a killer wardrobe, and a purpose. Like many women who come to me for a boudoir shoot, she wanted a boost. She'd experienced a rough time when her father passed away, and is finally starting to feel back to her old self.

As the final phase of "recovery", she decided on a boudoir shoot to boost her morale and to feel sexy again. 

AND there's no way she could not feel sexy after this shoot and these photos! VA VA VOOM!

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Hair and makeup by Kendall of  Mayhem Beauty

Hair and makeup by Kendall of Mayhem Beauty

I love starting out with something cozy....annnnd then moving into something a little less cozy! 

Here's Miss "B"'s story:

"About a month after I moved to Los Angeles to pursue acting and writing endeavors, my dad died and I experienced a bad case of adult acne. The two combined made me me feel depressed and where I didn't want to leave my house on some days. (Not to mention, I hid from cameras.) After a couple years of medications and skin consultations, I finally feel like me and have my skin under control."

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I decided to book a shoot for the last phase to feel more comfortable in my own skin, to improve confidence, to feel glamorous and sexy...the list could go on and on. This was a great experience! Not only did Kara make me feel comfortable throughout the shoot, she also kept me laughing!
— Miss B

I cannot tell you how much I love these two black and white images for a side-by-side acrylic wall art set! GAH! Be still my heart!

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"This experience definitely boosted my overall confidence and added a little 'va-va-voom' to my step!" - Miss B

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Annnnnd a hair flip for the finish! 

So many thanks to Miss "B" for trusting me with this experience! I commend her for doing something for herself so she could have the warm and fuzzies about who she is right now (which is an absolutely incredible woman!). 

WE ALL NEED A BOOST EVERY NOW AND THEN. BOUDOIR IS ONE HELL OF A BOOST. LET'S CHAT, DAHHLING!

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Name


The bombshell in hiding | Austin Boudoir Studio

I hear it all the time...some variation of: "Is that ME!? Hot damn! I didn't know THAT girl was hiding in THIS girl all along!"  

My personal boudoir philosophy involves rocking your beauty right NOW. Yep, we do hair and makeup and even "zzshush" photos a tiny bit, but I pride myself on bringing out the inner bombshell without completely changing someone's authentic appearance. After all, where would be the pride in that if you LOVED the photos but they weren't truly of yourself...rather a model caked with makeup and photoshopped to death? At my studio, you'll STILL look like you. On your best day ;) 

This woman, here, may have been a wee bit nervous for her session. She may or may not have had a cocktail fit for an old Irish man in her coffee cup. But she DEFINITELY rocked it, showed her confident self, trusted me, and got some absolutely FABULOUS images to be forever proud of.

"I originally booked this session as a gift to my husband for our one year wedding anniversary, as it turned out, and I've learned it often does… this was such a gift to ME! I loved my experience all the way from booking my session to hair and make up to the shoot to the reveal…"

Every single moment was empowering and authentic. Every moment was ME, I just didn’t know THAT me was in there!
— Miss C

She was gorgeous and funny as hell. I love a girl with a solid sense of humor and a great smile. Thank you, Miss "C" for sharing your story and your photos!